The Wizard of Waukesha (1980)
Directed by: Catherine Orentreich, Susan Brockman
Produced by: Catherine Orentreich
Cast: Les Paul
This is a real find, a rare and sought-after documentary. People who know about this film should be shitting a brick right about now. This documentary is not listed in IMDB, and there are no entries for it on Wikipedia or the Internet Archive.
Musicians and music lovers owe a huge debt of gratitude to Les Paul. He invented the solid body electric guitar, multi-track recording, and basically the entire industry of popular music.
I first saw this documentary on a PBS channel circa 1980-81. I looked for it over the years, but it was only a couple of years ago that I thought to look for it on eBay - and found it! Yes, I paid for this copy - it's worth it, too. Keep that in mind as you enjoy this 30-year-old documentary showing the Wizard of Waukesha, Les Paul, at play.
Here's a link to info about the movie at film.com
Article from the NY Times
...entertaining and informative documentary on one of the long-lasting talents in the music business. Excerpts from Les Paul's popular performances on radio in the 1930s highlight his quick rise to fame. His years with Fred Waring and recordings with his wife Mary Ford are balanced against his successes in designing electric guitars and one of his better-known inventions, the eight-track recording system. As urbane and versatile in person as his accomplishments suggest, Les Paul's own accounting of his past and snippets at the guitar round out this excellent documentary.
~ Eleanor Mannikka, All Movie Guide
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